All posts by hmjackson2013

Congratulations, Associate Professor Daniel Bessner

Congratulations to Daniel Bessner on his promotion to Associate Professor with tenure by the UW Provost. Two years ago, the Jackson Foundation celebrated Bessner’s induction as the first Anne H.H. and Kenneth B. Pyle Professor in American Foreign Policy. The professorship was established with a major gift from the Jackson Foundation. Dr. Kenneth B. Pyle and Senator Jackson shared a remarkable professional and personal rapport founded on their joint commitment to a strong and deeply knowledgeable American foreign policy community. We are so pleased that Bessner has already risen up the UW ranks.

Professor Bessner published his first book, Democracy in Exile: Hans Speier and the Rise of the Defense Intellectual, last April. It has garnered positive reviews from diplomatic and intellectual historians, as well as in more popular venues such as The Los Angeles Review of Books. Daniel is hard at work on his next work about the history of the RAND Corporation.

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Jackson School Director Reşat Kasaba (left) with Daniel Bessner (middle) and Professor Arne Westad, visiting from Harvard University

Taking a page out of his own history book, Bessner is rising to the challenge of being a public intellectual, writing for public consumption in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, Boston Review, and elsewhere. These pieces have engendered significant interest in the field and on Twitter, where scholars and experts frequently respond to and engage with Daniel and his ideas. We applaud this outreach, just as we recognize the research that underlies it. This is the Scoop Jackson ideal: scholarship and activism, expertise and outreach beyond academia. Daniel embodies it.

Professor Bessner has committed himself deeply to being a public historian. In the footsteps of both Ken Pyle and Senator Jackson, he is forging his own path forward. Congratulations, Daniel!

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Welcome, Board President Craig Gannett

We are pleased to announce that the Foundation’s Board of Governors recently elected Craig Gannett as President of the Board.  Craig is a partner resident in the Seattle office of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, where he focuses on electric utility regulation, renewable energy development, and climate change-related regulation.

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Craig providing welcoming remarks at a program at the Wilson Center in Washington, D.C

Early in his career, Craig served under Senator Jackson as counsel to the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, and later served as Senior Counsel to the committee.  In addition to his law practice, Craig teaches Climate Change Law at the University of Washington Law School, and is a frequent speaker on a wide range of topics relating to energy and climate change.  He also chairs the Advisory Board to the UW’s Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies.

Craig has long been engaged with the Foundation.  In addition to serving as a Vice President, he has chaired the Foundation’s Program and Activities Committee, which oversees grant proposal review and provides direction to staff regarding big-picture strategy and vision for our programs. As the Foundation has committed more attention to climate change, Craig’s substantive knowledge and national connections have helped to maximize our resources and enhance our effectiveness.

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Craig participating in a National Bureau of Asian Research program on China and the Rule of Law in Seattle

Speaking at our Board meeting after he assumed the presidency from outgoing President John Hempelmann, Craig commented that “we live in very troubling times.”  In addition to the erosion of human rights, the undermining of democracy at home and abroad, the denigration of public service, and the decline of civil discourse, he noted that the existential nature of climate change threatens to eclipse everything else.

The good news, he assured us, is that “we have the perfect antidote to these problems.”  The Foundation has a long history of working in precisely the areas that are most under assault, he said, and we have consistently advocated for the values employed so effectively by Senator Jackson – civilized, fact-based, bipartisan decisionmaking.  In addition, we have “our secret weapon,” the growing ranks of astute, young public and private sector professionals who have benefited from our Jackson Fellows leadership training program, now in its fourth year.  “They are ready to tackle these tough problems in the Jackson tradition, and I am confident that they will make a difference.”

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Craig (in the back by the bust of Senator Jackson) with the 2018 Jackson Fellows in Washington, D.C.

“Our challenge as a foundation,” Craig continued, “is to do more and to do it more effectively.” We have to “optimize every aspect of what we do – including governance, staff resources, external partnerships, and engaging and leveraging our board members — to help accomplish our mission.  We will also need to attract the financial resources necessary to meet the daunting challenges we face.  We have a huge opportunity before us, and our task is to see how much we can accomplish together.”

We share Craig’s enthusiasm and commitment.  You will enjoy seeing him in action, and we invite you to join us as we continue to address some of the most pressing problems of our time.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

 

Thank you, John Hempelmann, Foundation President

Leading a nonprofit board of governors takes focus, patience, drive, and sometimes simply the skill to gather folks around the table and move them forward, regardless of the many views expressed. Leading a board for ten years takes even more special qualities: boundless enthusiasm for the work, good instincts for motivating staff, and an ability to work with others to innovate and inspire.

Thank you, John Hempelmann, Foundation President 3John Hempelmann, in his ten-year stint as President of the Board of the Henry M. Jackson Foundation, possesses all of these qualities as well as others valued by Jackson Foundation staff and his Board colleagues. Chief among his leadership qualities would certainly have to be his optimistic nature, which feeds his can-do spirit, along with his readiness to roll up his sleeves and jump into the Foundation’s work with all of his energy.

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John Hempelmann with Jackson Leadership Fellows in Washington, D.C.

John led the Board from a moment when the Foundation – like its peers – faced deep challenges posed by the 2008 financial crisis. He helped shepherd the organization toward today’s stable financial footing. More importantly, perhaps, he prioritized retaining a robust program during those lean years and ensured that we were out there in the field keeping our eye on the ball, convening our partners, and making a difference. His spirit has inspired us. His interest and dedication have pushed us to be creative, particularly as we established our Jackson Leadership Fellows Program, which we dreamt up during John’s tenure and immediately found to be a success beyond our expectations.

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John and the Fellows with State Land Commissioner Hilary Franz at a site visit to our State Capitol, Olympia.

John’s openness to new ideas and fresh thinking brought out the best in me, surely, and in our entire organization. He flew countless miles on the Foundation’s behalf, never missing the opportunity to bang the drum for us at our programs near and far. He was our cheerleader-in-chief.

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John and Lara present the late Helen Jackson with the Jackson Public Service Award in 2009.

Fortunately, we are well poised to continue moving forward with visionary leadership.  Yesterday the Board unanimously elected Vice President Craig Gannett, Partner, Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, to the post of Foundation President. Craig, a climate and energy specialist, has been engaged in the Foundation’s work for more than a decade himself.  In a future blog, we will hear from Craig and get his thoughts about his vision for the Foundation over the next several years.

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Craig Gannett and John Hempelmann commemorate the transfer of leadership at the Board of Governors meeting yesterday as Lara Iglitzin looks on.

We were planning to honor John with a reception this week but we faced a foot of snow here in Seattle. Instead, we will formally celebrate John’s leadership in the spring. In the meantime, we thank John sincerely and are fortunate to have him remain on our Board, where his deep expertise will be welcomed.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

 

Supporting the Pro-Democracy Movement in Russia

Supporting the Pro-Democracy Movement in Russia
Natalia Arno, President and Founder of the Free Russia Foundation

Last week we had an opportunity to hear from Natalia Arno, the highly capable and passionate president and founder of the Free Russia Foundation (FRF). We’ve worked with FRF on two major programs in Washington, DC: the first connected political actors and activists with technology experts to see how technology could help the democracy movement in Russia; the second celebrated the results of that help by bringing in ten young, newly-elected politicians from local city councils around Moscow and elsewhere in Russia who had won elections in 2017 and 2018 despite the heavy-handed opposition of the State apparatus. We had Board members, staff, Jackson Fellows and community members in attendance, but I wish even more people could have heard Natalia describe the work that FRF is doing to promote Russian democracy. She stressed the importance of bringing people together to strategize in 2014, at a time of great political disenchantment because of the crackdown on civil society and the unlawful seizure by Russia of Crimea. Our conference allowed people to gather in a safe place and to, in her words, get re-energized and re-focused on the struggle ahead. Natalia sees a straight line from that gathering – both the public conference and the substantial private workshops to go over strategy and tactics – that led to successes in local elections in 2017 and 2018. Our second conference this past May featured the victorious democratic players and made a strong case for the power of local politics even in a politically repressive environment.

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Newly elected Russian politicians discuss strategy at May 2018 conference.

Natalia spoke movingly of what she sees as the connection between Senator Jackson and the famous Jackson-Vanik Amendment, which tied free emigration for Soviet Jews to trading rights for the USSR with the U.S., to today’s Sergei Magnitsky Act, which penalizes corruption and human rights abuses by Russian actors through targeted sanctions. (A Global Magnitsky Act now extends to countries beyond Russia.) Free Russia Foundation’s work seeks to convey a deeper understanding of Russia’s political goals and activities at home and abroad, something unfortunately we have all become too familiar with in this brave new world.

We were one of the first foundations to support the Free Russia Foundation in 2016 and helped put it on the map. Our staff has continued to be impressed with how well they leverage our money and that of other supporters to share their stories with key players in the administration, Congress, the State Department, and with other agencies and NGOs throughout Washington.

I hope that we will continue to partner with the Free Russia Foundation, as they are a group that understands the legacy of Senator Jackson and appreciates the value that a strategic investment by the Foundation can make in promoting democratic values in Russia.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Leadership for a World in Flux

The Henry M. Jackson Foundation periodically sponsors a lecture series that holds particular importance to it, as it honors the relationship between Senator Jackson and one of his long-time counselors in the environmental resources management and land use fields, Bill Van Ness.  Van Ness also served as the president of the Jackson Foundation for two decades. The series, the Jackson-Van Ness Lectures on Leadership, recognizes some of the key qualities shared by the two men, who worked together on legislation central to the Jackson legacy, including the National Environmental Policy Act.  Previous lecturers have included The Honorable William Ruckelshaus, one-time Attorney General of the U.S., and former Senator Slade Gorton.  A full list is here.

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William Van Ness with a bust of Senator Jackson

In late November, the Foundation was fortunate to hear the latest lecture in the series from Ana Mari Cauce, the president of the University of Washington, on the subject of “Leadership for a World in Flux.” This timely lecture – held a few weeks after the stunning presidential election results — was a thoughtful reflection of Dr. Cauce’s own evolution as a leader and her advice for the thousands of young people under her charge.  As Foundation President John Hempelmann said in his introduction of Dr. Cauce, the new university president has shattered many glass ceilings in her own career, rising through the ranks to become the UW’s first woman, Latina and openly gay president one year ago.  As Cauce herself mused, she may not come to mind as a typical university leader.

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U.W. President Ana Mari Cauce

President Cauce emphasized that in a university setting, leading with a more democratic and collaborative style is a given. Yet certain situations demand unilateral action, for example during a crisis or when a situation is critical, or when an issue represents a “non-negotiable core value.” She also highlighted the role of authenticity in leadership.  Authentic leadership requires self-awareness, self-monitoring and impulse control – all familiar concepts to a president who trained as a clinical psychologist.  She counseled, “Self-monitoring is so essential because as a leader your behavior sets the tone.”

jackson-fdn-hmj-bill-van-ness-lecture-series-on-leadershi75President Cauce has considered how to develop leadership skills in the next generation at the University, especially for those students who, like herself, may not be obvious leaders – either to themselves or to others.  She seeks to teach students “to practice leadership in whatever they do.”  Cauce concluded that, “Preparing as many people as possible with the skills to lead – lead themselves, lead their communities, to lead through crisis and to lead change will make our whole society stronger and, with a little luck, produce the kind of leaders our country and our world needs – now more than ever.

Please enjoy the audio from President Cauce’s lecture here or the full transcript on our website.  We have also linked to her own blog about the lecture here.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Water: The Front Line of Climate Change

We’ve been busy this fall, with events on both coasts touching on issues from civil liberties, national security and terrorism (with the Kennan Institute); to the global migration crises and human rights, and its impact both in Washington State and internationally (a Jackson School conference); to “Water and Security in an Uncertain World” with the Wilson Center in Washington, DC.

I’ll focus in on one of these provocative sessions today.  In the packed half-day, public and private event on water security on the East Coast in October, the Jackson Foundation joined with the Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program to address what Foundation President John Hempelmann termed “the close intersection of climate change, national security, and water.”  Sherri Goodman, former Deputy Undersecretary for Defense and a current Wilson Center Public Policy Fellow, concurred and called water “the front line of climate change.”

The two sessions assessed the risks to water security globally and explored responses to both ongoing problems and short-term water crises.  Lieutenant General Jeffrey Tailey (ret) lamented that “many people are indifferent to water security, which often takes a crisis to make us respond adequately.”  When asked how to generate both interest and policy progress to ensure greater action on water security and water rights, Christian Holmes, Global Water Coordinator, U.S. Agency for International Development, talked of generating a long-term strategy:  “You need to tell a story to engage people.  We haven’t been delivering a narrative.”  This approach could also help interest a U.S. President or Congress in taking more decisive action.

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Roger-Mark de Souza, Ken Conca, and Sherri Goodman speaking on Panel I: Risks and Responses

Foundation Vice President Craig Gannett noted in remarks seconded by many that the U.S. has historically – even in Senator Jackson’s day – not done well in water management in its own backyard.  “We are not a great model for the world,” he cautioned, even as this program focused primarily on international water concerns in regions such as South East Asia, Africa and the Middle East – and often on America’s leading role in the water management field abroad.

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Craig Gannett, Foundation Vice President

Ken Conca, American University Professor, raised the need to extend robust human rights protection to people advocating for water rights:  “Water is one of the real fulcrums for multiple goals – rights and democracy,” he stressed.  Sherri Goodman highlighted the reverse side of the importance of water: “Water can be a source of strategic instability,” exacerbating international conflicts and worsening human rights violations globally.

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Klomjit Chandrapanya, Doris Kaberia, and Sandra Ruckstuhl speaking on Panel II: Water Spillovers: Regional and Sectorial Effects

Roger-Mark de Souza, director of the Environmental Change and Security Program at Wilson, in closing the session, sought to pull together the threads of policy suggestions from the discussion.  He reiterated that major national reports, including the September 2016 Presidential Memo on Climate and Security, as well as the World Bank 2016 Climate Change Action plan, had raised to the highest policy levels the links between climate, security and water.  It is through gatherings such as this that water, climate, and national security will continue to be assessed and pushed forward to the front burner of the policy world.

We’re excited that our programming is diverse, and this program on water, climate and security concerns keeps us focused on critical policy issues that matter to the Jackson Foundation.

Lara Iglitzin

Executive Director

 

Jackson Leadership Fellows Inspire the Seattle Community

The Jackson Leadership Fellows program is having an impact that goes beyond our individual Fellows.  We’ve written about this before, but it keeps becoming clearer – our Fellows are reaching out to others, younger generations, new communities, and audiences.  Two great examples in the last few weeks:

The North Cascades Institute held a Youth Leadership Summit in October that the Jackson Foundation has helped to support for the past few years.  The Summit, held at the Mountaineers Seattle Program Center, brought together young participants in NCI’s programming for a day-long, intensive program highlighting new skills and connections for students.  This year, 2016 Jackson Leadership Fellows Michele Frix, Matthew Combe, Tom Bugert, Tamara Power-Drutis, and 2017 Fellows Alex Adams and Connor Birkeland worked together to lead two sessions for high school students on leadership skills and career development.  Interior Secretary Sally Jewell gave a surprise visit at the start of the day. The Foundation is pleased that our Jackson Fellows are reaching out to these young environmental leaders and providing models of community engagement.

Front row: Matthew Combe, Michele Frix, Tamara Power-Drutis, Tom Bugert, and in the back row Connor Birkeland and Alex Adams
Front row: 2016 Fellows Matthew Combe, Michele Frix, Tamara Power-Drutis, and Tom Bugert.  Back row: 2017 Fellows Connor Birkeland and Alex Adams

training-shotBoth the current and alumni Fellows enjoyed the event.  Michele Frix summed up the experience with the enthusiasm characteristic of our Jackson Fellows:

“It was truly a highlight of the year. I keep the Scoop Legacy book on my desk – a marked up copy where I have notes to myself on how his leadership style plays out in my day to day work. I have been going back to it more frequently as of late, to remind myself of what a servant leader looks, sounds and acts like. Sometimes when things gets busy, chaotic and challenging, it’s easy to revert back to a less thoughtful style of leadership. I have these little “WWSD” moments – what would Scoop do? And now after learning so much from the other fellows, these moments are often – what would other Scoop Troops do? The session we did with the young leaders was a poignant reminder of why I want to show up like a servant leader – every day, every moment, regardless of how challenging work gets.”

2016 Fellows Michele Frix (holding the Jackson Leadership book), Tom Bugert, Tamara Power-Drutis, and Matthew Combe with NCI student participants
2016 Fellows Michele Frix (holding the Jackson Leadership book), Tom Bugert, Tamara Power-Drutis, and Matthew Combe with NCI student participants

And in late October, the Holocaust Center for Humanity, an organization that has received several grants from the Jackson Foundation, held its annual luncheon to raise support for the excellent educational programs that it provides to students and the community.  One of our 2016 Jackson Leadership Fellows, Ilana Cone Kennedy, works as the Director of Education at the Holocaust Center.  Her Fellows’ project consisted of the creation of a Student Leadership Board, comprised of 30 high school students, who are now working closely with the Holocaust Center to reach other young people throughout the community.

Student Leadership Board Feb 2016 w Steve Adler cropThe big annual fundraiser featured several of these young Student Leadership Board members and their stories of how they had been moved to action by their engagement with the Holocaust Center under Ilana’s educational programming.  It was inspiring to see so many of these young people talking about the contemporary relevance of the Holocaust to them as they confront news stories about Syrian refugees, genocide in Sudan, and other modern challenges with historical resonance.  When Ilana conceived of the Student Leadership Board, she wanted to convey lessons about leadership that had inspired her in the Jackson Leadership Fellows program.

We are proud that the Jackson Leadership Fellows are reaching out to new audiences, doubling and tripling the impact of this important program.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Jackson School Attracts Young Global Leaders

The Jackson Foundation has a long and proud history tied to the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies.  Our support for undergraduate and graduate student programming, faculty positions, conferences, visiting lecturers, and research has been at the core of the Foundation’s work since its inception.  The School was close to Senator Jackson’s heart, as it promotes new generations of leaders who will help our country understand the world and take part in America’s foreign policy establishment.

The School is always innovating, and we have been supportive in launching many of the new programs developed over the past decades.  The Master of Arts in International Studies, or MAAIS, a program created two years ago, is a great example of the reinvention and re-thinking at the School under the leadership of Jackson School director Resat Kasaba.  MAAIS is designed to attract early and mid-career professionals from all over the world who have an interest in a 10-month Master’s program that tackles critical global challenges in a pragmatic, policy-oriented manner.  Conceived as a way to connect the university community with the broader Puget Sound region – and all the expertise of its business, philanthropic, and policy circles – the program marries lectures, field visits, and group projects with in-depth international affairs education.

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MAAIS 2016 Graduation Class

Seattle’s location and the excellence of the university draw the dynamic young individuals to this program.  The MAAIS Civic Council, created to support the students, consists of corporate, philanthropic, NGO, political and security sector figures from companies and organizations influencing global policy and decision making.  Recently I had an opportunity, along with a few other members of the Civic Council, to meet with the new MAAIS students from the 2016-17 class and talk about how we can connect them to the broader community.  Once again the students are diverse in every sense of the word – hailing from Afghanistan, China, New England, Hungary, the Pacific Northwest, and Pakistan, among other geographic origins – and representing interests from food security, disability rights, and international trade to journalism, diplomacy and humanitarian development.  Several of the students have had extensive careers in the military, and plan to return there once they’ve received their degrees.  They are experienced young professionals who hope to gain new skills from the MAAIS program, where they will find exposure to new ideas, technology, and a vibrant Seattle community of entrepreneurs and NGOs.

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The Jackson School is already a nationally-recognized leader in international affairs education.  This professionally-oriented new degree allows more students to take advantage of all the Jackson School has to offer and then go out and share what they’ve learned with the world.  The Foundation is proud to have made another grant of support to this important program just this week.

Read more about the MAAIS program and the wonderful cohort of students engaged at the School this year.  And tell young professionals about it as they consider navigating international affairs to move forward in their careers.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Meet the 2017 Jackson Leadership Fellows!

We are excited to announce the new class of the Jackson Leadership Fellows Program — our second — an initiative at the heart of the Foundation’s work.  The Fellows Program is intended to provide a small cohort of young professional leaders in the Puget Sound region with training, mentoring, and networking to build their skills.  The program is values-based:  it is founded on the principles that anchored Senator Jackson and that we believe translate to a younger generation.   Their enthusiastic, community-oriented, and passionate outlook invigorates all of us.  And we intend to keep them connected to the Jackson Foundation and the Jackson legacy.  We know you will be excited to learn more about who they are and how they will contribute to our region – and our nation – in the years ahead.

Collage_Fotor4copyThe 2017 class is diverse in so many ways, with Fellows drawn from the government, non-profit, academic, philanthropic, and business sectors.  We are certain the variety of viewpoints represented will help generate new ideas and new ways of solving problems.  The Fellows range in age from young 20’s to 40.  They share an enthusiasm for their careers:  this year’s class is engaged in natural resources management, climate, and renewable energy as well as rule of law, human rights, political communication, racial equity, and civil discourse.  It is that tremendous commitment to success – coupled with a desire to give back to the community – that has already made them stand out.

We hope to contribute to the continued development of these exceptional young leaders.  We will keep you informed on the work they are doing together and individually in the spirit and tradition of Senator Henry M. Jackson.

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director

Jackson Fellow promotes key Jackson legislative legacy

Andrew Lewis Andrew Lewis, one of the 2016 Jackson Leadership Fellows, chose for his project to analyze and write about an important Jackson achievement – the Land and Water Conservation Fund – addressing both its significance and its future funding and standing in Congress. As a recent graduate from the UC Berkeley School of Law, Andrew felt naturally drawn to legislation close to the heart of the Jackson legacy. Andrew has always been heavily involved in Washington State politics – starting at the early age of 14 as an intern in Washington State Senator Patty Murray’s re-election in 1994! His legal interests include environmental law, so he was attracted to the battle over the Land and Water Conservation Fund’s future. Senator Jackson introduced the original Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) Act at President John F. Kennedy’s request. For over 50 years, the Fund has contributed resources to parks, wild spaces, recreation areas, and the natural heritage of our country. A small portion of oil and gas royalties funds the LWCF, as Jackson intended it to do, making the funding source smart economic and environmental policy.

Andrew’s paper, published in the Ecology Law Quarterly in spring 2016, explains the history of the LWCF and its purposes, namely “to preserve, develop and assure accessibility to outdoor recreation resources for the American people.” To do this, Congress authorized a $900 million annual appropriation to fund the LWCF. Historically, however, while the Fund has received resources, it has never received the full amount intended by the legislation. Andrew shows the LWCF’s success in driving conservation and economic growth despite its dwindling funding from Congress over the years.

Most important, Andrew describes the current state of the LWCF as “tenuous.” Congress gave the Fund a temporary, three-year extension and an appropriation of $450 million. Foundation President John Hempelmann mentored Andrew and provided him with careful editing as well as a big-picture political perspective on the legislation. Both John and Andrew expressed relief that the Fund’s life has been extended, but they are concerned about its future.  Andrew outlines options currently under discussion in Congress – led by Washington State leaders – that would provide permanent funding for the LWCF.

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John Hempelmann, Foundation President, with Brett Phillips and Andrew Lewis

The paper does an excellent job of clearly assessing the past and future prospects of this important piece of Jackson’s environmental legacy, and the protection of our nation’s natural resources. Bravo to Andrew for his excellent piece and for landing an article in a prestigious law journal – all while finishing law school.

 

Lara Iglitzin, Executive Director